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Bjarke Ingels And Jakob Lange At Burning Man, and Other Assorted Architects At Kochi Biennale

July 12, 2018

Bjarke Ingels And Jakob Lange Launch Crowdfunding To Install A Mirrored Sphere At Burning Man

Bjarke Ingels And Jakob Lange Launch Crowdfunding To Install A Mirrored Sphere At Burning Man

Mirrored Sphere at Burning Man 2018.jpg


Burning Man, as an event, and as a community, are extremely popular now, and sold out as soon as the expensive tickets go on sale. The spots get filled in a hurry, and the expenditure on installations is increasing. Ingles has pulled a leaf out of Anish Kapoor, Jef Koontz, Kusuma’s books, and half the science fiction movies to come up with a hanging ORB, a sphere representing Earth.

Architecture of ephemeralilty

On architecture side, new materials and technologies in last 3 decades have made possible mirrored buildings. Since every half decent architect has grown up defending and describing how their design fits into the context, and when the context is too stunning, or historic, how their building merges in the surroundings or even vanishes!

Foster, Herzog, Zumthor, Gehry, Sanaa and countless others have used reflective surfaces to achieve the same aim. From Concert hall to laptop roof, (Apple store, actually) to hiding modernity in an old European town, starting in late 80’s, inventions in glass and polishing techniques for steel and aluminium have made it possible to realise the dream of vanishing materiality for architects.

For Burning Man, both the aims of ‘Leave no trace’ and ‘Reflect the whole City’ come together with the idea of ORB. Let us hope it gets the crowd to fund it’s creation out of nowhere, in the middle of nowhere… As Jean Nouvel says, “Light is matter, and Light is a basic material”

Architects and their installations at Kochi Biennale

Kochi Biennale, the art festival using city as its venue has now gained much popularity. Something similar to the Burning Man although not in the same league. The city, already popular with tourists, and with it’s historic part (read venue for biennale) taken over by businesses and hotels catering to tourism attracts artists and art minded folks from domestic and international locations during the Kochi Muziris (Muziris being the name of the old port Kochi), a bi annual art event that has art displays, installations at various locations, and associated activities.

Architects, and teams of architects led by architects have been a part of this, starting with Bijoy Jain’s brick sculpture and melted tar monoliths. In the latest round, three others from architect community had presence in Cochin, including Sankalpa and team, on behalf of CEPT. But except for Anish Kapoor’s liquid artwork, every installation has been very tactile, and holds it’s three dimensions, very unapologetic. Or may be Indian architects still can’t escape the idea that everything they make has to ‘stand’ solid.



Anish Kapoor

Bijoy Jain - Kochi 2014.jpg

Bijoy Jain


Even the new one by Tony Joseph is in the same league. As opposed to using the ‘non materiality/ reflectiveness’ to represent Earth, the installations at Kochi, for both art and buildings use Brick, Wood and Bamboo and other ‘vanishing over time’ materials, and remain of Earth, rooted in ground.

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